The assignment for this project:

The subject of the project is “physical image”. In the creation of a “physical image” consider using light and shadow, point of view, kinect and interactive installations. Think big and ambitious, This is an opportunity to design and specify a large scale, expensive project.

This semester a lot of the classes I am taking deal with the idea of reality. What is it actually? Does that even matter? How do humans experience it? Is there only one? Or several, or maybe none? I am not primarily concerned with the answerers to these questions, although I certainly am interested in them. What I really care about is the human experience within whatever reality exists. The reality that is maybe created for us by the way humans actually exist in the world.

The idea of relatively and point of view have a large impact on the reality one perceives (a lot my recent thinking on this subject has been informed by The Order of Time by Carlo Rovelli). The immediate reality for anyone person seems to have a lot to do with context or environment. Truth becomes a little fuzzy here. Multiple things can be true at once, depending on context and point of view.

This is what I want to explore. That there can be multiple things that are true at the same time. How does this make us, humans, feel? The tension between multiple, maybe even conflicting truths. I want to focus on this from the human experience perspective. What are the ways that people behave or express themselves when feeling many things at once? When asked to do something that is contrary to how one feels. Last, to challenge the idea that human belief is binary, yes or no. That the absolutism often asked of people does not line up with how people actual are.

The Idea

I wasn’t 100% sure where to start with my idea. I started by searching for projects that attempted to show or be multiple things at once.

The first work I found that really felt like it was what I was looking for was Blur by Del Jackson. The object, which is 3D printed, is both focused and blurred. The clarity depends on where you look, or how much of the piece you look at. This hit on my concerns around perspective and multiple truths.

[ *Blur* by Del Jackson ]

Blur reminded me of an illustration I did a few years ago. In a similar way, there are two things present in one being. In the case of this drawing, emotion is interfering with clarity (not that emotions are a bad thing or that thought is perfectly logical). Although I like my drawings, I wanted to find some examples of other works that shared the same ideas.

[ "The Tension Of Thought" ]

I found two works by artist Drew Young that I think really capture the feeling I am after. Skeptic is similar to my illustration. Before-glow is more expansive in terms of the multiple truths it presents.

[ "Skeptic" by Drew Young ]

[ "Before-glow" by Drew Young ]

I then started to look for physical work that felt like this. I looked through a lot of Jonty Hurwitz’s work. His piece, Lala Land uses a mirror to construct the image of a full human being from partial sculpture of humans.

[ "Lala Land" by Jonty Hurwitz]

At this point I felt like I had a good idea of the feeling I was after. But how to achieve it? It was at this point I remembered an illusion I had scene in the past few years, ambiguous cylinders:

The object is a square, and a circle, and both! It’s dependent on one’s point of view.

The illusion, and many other generations of it, were developed by Kokichi Sugihara. In a later post I will go in-depth into how this illusion works. I did find a nice online demo that shows the basics of how it does:




Scale and context

For more on this, please see the post: Scale and Context

2D rendering of what the object would look like in a gallery.
[ Rendering of Layout for Displaying Ambiguous Object ]


For more on this, please see the post: Update 1

[ Ambiguous Objects - 3D Printed ]